The New Voyager

This work is inspired by the flat,expansive and mysterious landscape of the Cambridgeshire Fenland…a vast area of open skies and distant horizons, criss crossed by a lattice of artificial waterways…straight as an arrow.

I hope that viewers will be engaged by the layers of colour, texture and surface qualities of this cold wax painting and also that  they will respond to the physicality of this work, the numerous marks, striations and incisions in the cold wax material. I hope too, they will enjoy the interaction of disparate surfaces and layers and the sense of time passing through the landscape and through the painting.

This painting reflects a diverse series of influences; from the ‘art povera’ movement, through minimalism, expressionism and colour field painting.

The additional photographs provide a clearer understanding of the translucency, subtlety and rich texture of the surface.

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Detail from ‘The New Voyager’

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Cambridge Open Studios

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Cambridge Open Studios will be taking place over the next 4 weekends and this is a fantastic opportunity to have a chat with some of the local artists in the county and look at their work. I will be opening my ‘garage’ – seems a little grandiose to call it a studio – for the next two weekends from 11am until 6 pm Saturday and Sunday. Everyone is welcome to come and see what I have been producing over the last copule of years. I will also have some of my photographic work on display alongside the paintings.

The shot above was taken today…just trying to organise the space as you can see…if you do drop in, just be careful of the wet paint!

Vale

Vale

This is a large acrylic painting on a 122 cm x 72 cm professional quality canvas. It is semi abstract in terms of technique and style. It is based on the rhythms and cycle of growth seen in nature. There is a spiralling arc of movement…….. upwards towards the light. The surface is built up in heavy impasto layers, these are combined with tissue, leaves, newsprint and card. Additional translucent glazes have been added over time. I have been influenced by the contemporary artists Anselm Kiefer and Gerhardt Richter.

Till

Mixed Media painting on canvas:60 x 60 x 4cm

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This is a mixed-media landscape painting on a 60cm x 60cm deep edge canvas. It is semi abstract and expressionistic in terms of technique and style. It is based on my day to day experience of living in the dramatic Fenland landscape of East Cambridgeshire in England. The word ’till’ is interchangeable with ‘until’ and I have tried to reflect both meanings in this piece. Working with the land is about understanding time and intervals of time, it is about rhythms of activity and inactivity, of waiting, of anticipating……until. It can also refer to a vault; a place to hold treasure.

The heavy texture of the painting combines gesso, sand, plaster, marble dust, bitumen and oil paint. The material and paint is applied with a variety of tools including brushes and palette knives. The surface is built up in layers and glazes over a period of time. I have been influenced by the contemporary artists Anselm Kiefer and Gerhardt Richter.

Land Fall

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‘Land Fall’ is an idea, not a location. In Winter, when the ground is hard underfoot, the activity of man scores pathways and coordinates on the surface. There is little or no high land in Cambridgeshire, only a gentle rise and fall of the earth, almost subliminal, to be measured in micro centimetres. This painting is a rich, textured mixed media piece on a deep edge canvas; gold and metallic paints have been added to create areas of lustre and iridescence. I have attempted to take a range of photographs, some in raking light to reveal the ever changing surface qualities.

 
Dimensions: 60cm x 60cm x 4cm on canvas

Materials: Oil and acrylic on canvas, Paper, Graphite, Bitumen, Asphalt.

Cambridge Open Arts Exhibition 2016

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I have 3 paintings in the COAX Annual Exhibition 2016, come along and take a look at over 600 works on display….today and tomorrow only!

http://www.coax.org.uk/art-awards.html

The Preview Reception took place on Friday18th November at 6.30pm and the Awards Ceremony was opened by local MP Heidi Allen.

Free entry over the weekend with plenty of parking.

Times:
Friday (Preview reception): 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Saturday: 10:00am – 5:00pm
Sunday: 10:00am – 4:00pm

Exhibiting artists compete for the Cambridge Art Awards with a top prize of £500, runners-up awards of framing prizes kindly provided by Milton based HMC Framing and this year the Top Twenty chosen artists will go forward to a two week exhibition at the Babylon Gallery in Ely.

Mercurial

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‘Mercurial’ is a painting I have just completed for the ‘Cambridge Envisaged’ Exhibition; the composition, structure and style closely follows the other images in the series. I have retained the square format, recurring geometric shapes and warm tonality seen in previous works. The influence of American abstract expressionism is visible in the flatness and absence of overt representation; at the same time I have tried to convey a sense of the architectural qualities of the city of Cambridge. The painting is designed as a bridge between two different vantage points, an aerial or plan view of  buildings, rivers and parks and a vertical ‘stacking’ of these interconnected and interchangeable motifs.  The Cubists kaleidoscopic rendering of physical objects and space has liberated us all to see the world through our own eyes and intuition.

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‘Mercurial’ Close up detail

Cartography

I thought I would tell you something about my working process. My studio is a partially converted garage; I used to work alongside bikes, washing machines, lawnmowers and assorted gardening equipment but since I started to work on a larger scale, this became increasingly problematic. I was also receiving too many complaints about the paint marks on the ‘white goods’. Every painter needs space!

The inspiration for this series – based on the city of Cambridge – came from my many visits to the town. As a photographer, I must have taken literally hundreds of photographs of the streets and  college buildings and I believe I know the city extremely well. I have always admired the paintings of German artist Anselm Kiefer and I am aware that he often begins many of his large scale pieces by working over photographs. I began each of these paintings by working over small monochrome prints, using them as a sort of visual trigger or catalyst. I also included a range of collage elements to generate compositional possibilities and ideas. The fact that none of the original photographs are visible in the final painting is immaterial; they played the important role of ‘icebreaker’ and opened the way for new avenues to be explored.

 

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The Artisan

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This is a digital drawing combining photography and hand drawn layers using a Wacom Tablet. The figure you see here is called ‘the artisan’ and he can be found wandering the flat open Fenlands and marshes in search of suitable subjects to draw and paint. You can find other drawings under the illustration section of my site.